It’s day 209 of the Trump presidency. And the forecast calls for cloudy skies, hot air from the north, and a chance of tweets about Nazis.
Early this morning, CNN published an astonishing letter by former CIA Director John Brennan that said President Trump was not only a “national disgrace” but that he was “putting our national security and our collective futures at grave risk.” And President Trump seemed determined to prove Brennan right this morning by sending out a barrage of unhinged tweets.
President Trump started the morning nice and early (6:19am ET) by attacking Senator Lindsey Graham. Senator Graham came out yesterday condemning the president’s reaction to the terrorist attack in Charlottesville, saying “Your words are dividing Americans, not healing them.”
Trump continued his thoughts about Graham by bringing up the 2016 presidential election, something that he’s obviously still obsessed with since he lost the popular vote by roughly 3 million votes.
After bashing Graham, President Trump turned his attention to what he calls the “fake news,” a term that has lost all meaning and seems to represent anything that is critical of the president.
This cry from both Trump and his dwindling base of supporters, that the media is misrepresenting what he said, is particularly stunning because the nightly newscasts have devoted large chunks of airtime to the president’s comments unedited. Some Trump supporters in the past few days have even taken issue with news outlets that cover his words at all.
Corey Lewandowski, the president’s former campaign manager, said that it was biased for the news to cover the president’s remarks for such long periods of time.
By 6:56am, President Trump then proceeded to attack more members of his own party like Arizona Senator Jeff Flake, who he called “Flake Jeff Flake,” and accused of being “toxic.”
It was clear what prompted his remarks, since Fox News had just aired a long segment on Kelli Ward and Senator Flake.
The president watches hours of TV per day, despite the fact that he insists he doesn’t have time to watch. The Fox News coverage was also about Trump’s plan to hold a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona on Tuesday. The mayor of Phoenix took to Twitter yesterday to ask that the rally not take place as the country mourns the terrorist attack by neo-Nazis in Charlottesville.
“I am disappointed that President Trump has chosen to hold a campaign rally as our nation is still healing from the tragic events in Charlottesville,” Mayor Greg Stanton said in the statement.
Mayor Stanton speculated that the president might be traveling to Arizona in order to announce a pardon for the infamous Sheriff Joe Arpaio, something that President Trump has hinted at before. Sheriff Arpaio was convicted of criminal contempt when he continued racial profiling and imprisoning Latinos disproportionately, ignoring court orders.
President Trump has shown himself to choose the worst possible option practically every time he’s presented with a choice. So as the country continues to descend into chaos over his inept leadership, the easy money is on things only getting worse from here on out. But the day is still young. Maybe he’ll finally denounce neo-Nazis unequivocally without pandering to the nation’s worst racists. But I’m not going to hold my breath.
The only thing we know for sure is that President Trump will continue to tweet, using the online medium that contributed to his rise to power. And each tweet serves as a reminder that these are truly dark times for America, a country whose own president is undoubtedly a national disgrace.
Update, 9:22am: President Trump just sent out a new flurry of tweets, doubling down on his support for Confederate statues, and even calling these monuments to traitors “beautiful.”
Correction: This post originally stated that the president was still at Trump Tower. He left New York last night. I regret the error.